HB-IWC
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KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 4:57 pm

Last night marked the start of KLM operations to its newest gateway in China, Chengdu (CTU). For the rest of the summer schedule, KLM, in cooperation with codeshare partner China Southern, will be operating twice weekly B772ER services on the AMS CTU route according to the following schedule:

KL891 AMS CTU 2040 1230+1 Wed/Sun
KL892 CTU AMS 1400 1845 Mon/Thu

KLM will be the first European carrier into CTU, and it is a sure thing that Lufthansa and others will be closely following the performance of the new route. LH has been known to be actively looking into service to secondary Chinese cities.

Last night's inaugural flight was operated by B772ER PH-BQC "Cichen Itza" and the aircraft is meanwhile on its way back to AMS as KL892 with an ETA of 18.34LT.
 
Joost
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 5:12 pm

Wasn't it posted recently on the forum that this winter already, the frequency will be reduced to one weekly? And if so, what's the use of a one-weekly flight? Of course, through their codeshare they offer daily (?) connections, but still it surprised me.
 
UpperDeck79
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 5:31 pm

Quoting Joost (Reply 1):
Wasn't it posted recently on the forum that this winter already, the frequency will be reduced to one weekly? And if so, what's the use of a one-weekly flight? Of course, through their codeshare they offer daily (?) connections, but still it surprised me.

Seriously, only 1 weekly during winter? The loads must look really bad then... I wonder how AY's plans for secondary Chinese cities look like after this?
AY and ANA rock!
 
HB-IWC
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 5:49 pm

Quoting Joost (Reply 1):
Wasn't it posted recently on the forum that this winter already, the frequency will be reduced to one weekly? And if so, what's the use of a one-weekly flight? Of course, through their codeshare they offer daily (?) connections, but still it surprised me.

During the slowest weeks of the winter season, KLM will reduce frequencies on all AMS-China routes for about six weeks from late January until early March only. AMS PEK will reduce to 3 weekly, AMS PVG to 4 weekly and AMS CTU to 1 weekly. Apart from that, frequencies wil remain as before (daily to PEK and PVG, twice weekly to CTU) for the rest of the winter season. It's far too early to call CTU a failure.
 
Joost
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 6:05 pm

Although I'm sure that there is a logic behind this, I can not really see it yet. Is there such a significant drop in traffic in just that couple of weeks, that they reduce an important city as PEK from 7 to 3? Are they doing this every year? And what will the a/c do? They must save out 2 747s by this - is heavy maintainance planned in these weeks?

And for CTU, I expected cargo to be an important market rather than pax, especially on a low-frequency flight. So why no 747-combi?
 
HB-IWC
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 7:29 pm

Quoting Joost (Reply 4):
Although I'm sure that there is a logic behind this, I can not really see it yet. Is there such a significant drop in traffic in just that couple of weeks, that they reduce an important city as PEK from 7 to 3? Are they doing this every year? And what will the a/c do? They must save out 2 747s by this - is heavy maintainance planned in these weeks?

These reductions are happening next winter for the first time and as far as I can see, it is because of a combination of low loads during those weeks and reinforced maintenance operations. The entire MD11 fleet is supposed to be undergoing a retrofit over the winter months.
 
lamedianaranja
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 7:43 pm

Quoting HB-IWC (Reply 3):
AMS CTU to 1 weekly

Does that mean the crew gets to stay there for one whole week? I can't believe that. They'll probably have to position to some other city but is there a T7 destination close by? This it is not profitable for KL crewwise.
I wish that all skies were orange and blue!!
 
EK156
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 8:17 pm

I thought KLM flies to CAN as well??? Was I mistaken?
 
HB-IWC
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 8:48 pm

Quoting Lamedianaranja (Reply 6):
They'll probably have to position to some other city but is there a T7 destination close by?

The closest T7 destinations are KIX and MNL.

Quoting EK156 (Reply 7):
I thought KLM flies to CAN as well??? Was I mistaken?

The CAN flight is operated by China Southern and KLM codeshares on the flight.
 
HB-IWC
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RE: KLM Starts Chengdu Operations

Mon May 29, 2006 8:55 pm

The CTU flight has in today's CRS update again been loaded as a twice weekly operation for the entire winter, but the operational days have changed to Tuesdays and Sundays from Amsterdam. For PEK and PVG, flight reductions are still planned in February 2007, although the flights are basically daily and will be before and after February.